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Birth of the Living Dead (2013)

Year of the Living Dead (original title)
Not Rated | | Documentary | 18 October 2013 (USA)
2:02 | Trailer
A documentary that shows how George A. Romero gathered an unlikely team of Pittsburghers to shoot his seminal film: Night of the Living Dead (1968).




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Himself - Filmmaker
Himself (archive footage)
H. Rap Brown ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself - Film Historian
Herself - Film Producer
Chiz Schultz ...
Himself - Film & TV Producer
Himself - Filmmaker
Jason Zinoman ...
Himself - Author, Shock Value
Christopher Cruz ...
Himself - Filmmaker & Teacher
Himself - Host, The Treatment
Samuel D. Pollard ...
Himself - Professor, NYU Film (as Sam Pollard)
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Herself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)


In 1968, Pittsburgh native, George Romero, would direct a low budget film that would revolutionize the horror genre forever, Night of the Living Dead. Through interviews with the talents involved, the story of this film creation is told and how it reflected its time with a grotesque and powerful immediacy. Furthermore, the film's difficult and controversial release to an unsuspecting film public is also recounted as it survived the early revulsion to become a landmark cinematic creation with a profound effect on popular culture. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


1968. Peace. Love. And the undead.




Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

18 October 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Birth of the Living Dead  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,239 (USA) (18 October 2013)


$8,590 (USA) (8 November 2013)

Company Credits

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Did You Know?


The credits still refer to the film by its working title, "Year of the Living Dead." See more »


References The Defilers (1965) See more »

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User Reviews

A DVD Featurette… unholy expanded
5 August 2015 | by (Cherry Hill, NJ) – See all my reviews

Like it or not, George A. Romero truly is the father of today's horror cinema. The original "Dead" trilogy – NIGHT, DAWN, and DAY – accomplish that simple truth in unveiling a very human metaphor wrapped in the grisly package of blood-letting entertainment. And why not celebrate the man and his accomplishments? Perhaps dig deep into the motives and industry tales of movie-making. Perhaps that is what Rob Kuhns set out to do with his BIRTH OF THE LIVING DEAD documentary. Unfortunately, the data unearthed in BIRTH OF THE LIVING DEAD could have been a solid DVD featurette. Instead, an additional 40 minutes of repetitiveness was added, dragging the film down as a lumbering, undead walker.

To its credit, BIRTH sets the stage of 1968 America, when NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD was released, quite well providing key insights to the civil rights movement as well as to the fact that NIGHT stars an African American. Likewise, the documentary gets right into how – and why – the film was made and some of the issues and trickery Romero and his crew employed during production and editing; Romero himself is presented as both jolly and candid.

Then the film rinses and repeats. And repeats. And, oh, did you forget that NIGHT starred an African American? Well hold on tight, you'll be reminded in just a few short minutes as horror film director Larry Fessenden will tell you how great the original film is and repeat the lines verbatim for the camera.

Granted, the docu's subject is NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, but that topic alone screams out for accompaniment. There was absolutely no mention of the 1990 remake, nor the 2004 remake of DAWN. And obviously the most apparent of Romero's offspring – THE WALKING DEAD – is only shown as a background image.

Kuhns showed the historical relevance of NIGHT, but only provided the merest taste of its social impact, a taste that was sorely missed.

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